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Brief Encounters: New Albums 6-9-23 – 6-15-23 Reviewed

Fountain Baby – Amaarae – the Ghanaian American singer is pretty out there or at least as out there as a woman who wants to fuck a puddle can be. Her voice is pitched way high and that is a problem, but the songs are lovely pop confections with a true blue attitude – B

Wronger – Cowboys In The Campfire – Imagine the Faces meet the Replacements with some alty indie country flava on this old school OG. It is great to hear Tommy,, just a very pleasurable experience where even a break up is a reason to play (on the excellent “Wrong”) – A-

3MEN2 KBRN – Eladio Carrion – The Puerto Rican rapper and Bad Bunny buddy with a great set of reggaeton barn burners and straightforward ballads -all in Spanish of course – B+

The Age of Pleasure – Janelle Monae – five years after “Crazy, Classic Life” and nothing on her fourth album is its sonic equal, but it is all a bright shining ode to fucking, like a sexual Pinocchio evolved cyborg. The problem is that it lacks flat out memorable songs, otherwise it is perfect, a brisk and pleasurable half an hour of electronic if Prince were Monae – A-

Weathervanes – Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit – maybe three goodies, and the rest is so typical self-important with hints of prog – C+

Whitsitt Chapel – Jelly Roll – he went from rap to country rock and found a whole lotta new friends on a strong country rock collection, there is even a couple as good as “Son Of A Sinner – B

Joy’All – Jenny Lewis – if Rilo Kiley had been formed in 1977 and not 1998 they might well have sounded like Jenny does on her most consistent solo album to date, with a move from a pure pop song like “Apples And Oranges” and following it with the Motown girl group “Essence Of Life”. And she pulls off the same track for the entire half hour. by the way I met her once and she was very sweet indeed so… – A-

Space Heavy – King Krule – low key as always, sing speak, electronic aloneness – C+

Power To Play – McFly – the UK boy band rockers return with a not untypical set of heavy on the guitars tracks and “God Of Rock N Roll” with a Gary Glitter bang – B-

Hard To Love – Moneybagg Yo – on his sixteenth mixtape, Yo continues to grow up in a world of bad love and bad business, both Future and Lil Durk are featured, on an average collection of southern rap – B-

The Show – Niall Horan – gone is the Americana vibe of the debut, replaced by pop rock prettiness aided by former 1D producer John Henry and the first song is a sweet nothing. Otherwise, it doesn’t take off often enough though to be fair it beats out Zayn if not Harry – B

Lost At Sea – Rob Grant – pedodad to one Lana Del Rey, the daughter whose career he financed, and the two songs she sings are very lovely while daddy’s piano based instrumentals elsewhere are a snooze – B-

Adderall – Slipknot – Shawn Crahan with an EP worth of classic rockism that fails to ignite – C

Memory Dust EP – Spoon – three spikey indie rockers from the long time band – B

Eight – The Boo Radleys – the 90s Brit poppers with an electronic dance vibe added to nothing much – C-

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